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Soles4Souls: A Pair of Shoes Can Change Your Life

Did you know that by giving just ONE dollar through soles4souls.com, you can give the gift of the possibility a job for a man or woman looking for work to support a family, or an education to a child to help elevate the next generation out of poverty. One dollar will purchase a pair of shoes that are so desperately needed to allow a person to look for work  or a child to attend school to have the possibility of an education. One dollar can make a life changing difference of hope or despair. Soles4souls offers not just shoes, but hope.

The brainchild of Wayne Elsey, born out of his desire to do something after the 2004 Tsunami Disaster in Southeast Asia, through donations of new and gently used shoes, and grass root fund raisers and shoe drives, Soles4Souls has provided shoes to over 17,000,000 people in over 127 countries. Using spokespeople with a passion for the cause and partnerships of corporations large and small, the word is spread to communities and cities throughout the world. The result? Educating people on how important a single pair of shoes are to a human being’s life and allowing them to show their understanding by the generosity of their giving.

Some facts taken from soles2souls.com:

  • Podoconiosis (a/k/a Mossy Foot) – A form of elephantiasis that results from volcanic minerals in soil coming into contact with bare skin. It is most prevalent in Africa and especially in the higher altitude regions in the eastern and central part of the continent In Ethiopia alone, 1 million people are estimated to be affected, while in Cameroon an additional 500,000 people are estimated to be affected. Stigmatization of people with podoconiosis is pronounced; patients being excluded from school, local meetings, churches and mosques, and barred from marriage with unaffected individuals
  • There are 2.2 billion children in the world, and 1 billion live in poverty. Soles4Souls estimate that 300 million of these children lack a pair of shoes.
  •  According to EPA statistics, Americans threw away approximately 790,000 tons of footwear and apparel in 2010.
  • Soil transmitted parasites – Hookworm, whipworm and roundworm afflict 740 million
    people a year, including 44 million pregnant women. Effects include low birth weights,
    malnutrition, and anemia
These are just a few results  to a person’s health that can occur when living a life without the benefit of shoes.
They have another program that allows them to reuse shoes not appropriate for disaster relief (i.e. high heels…) by reconditioning them and allowing them to be resold or bartered as a micro-enterprise business.  Their site says it also “provides a low cost source of shoes for the local population without undermining the local economy with a large supply of free shoes. Shoes are in high demand for micro-enterprise because they are universally needed and valued, can be easily bartered for other goods, and are a tangible commodity that is easy to transport and sell”.
The next time you are trying to figure out which pair of shoes will look best with that particular outfit and are taking pair after pair out, please remember that some people in this world would love to have just one of those pairs.

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The New JLo Barbie Doll

Well, Mattel you have done it again. You have made a new doll in the likeness of Jennifer Lopez and once again have made her figure unrecognizable to anything that resembles JLo’s curvy body

Well, Mattel  you have done it again. You have made a new doll in the likeness of Jennifer Lopez and once again have made the figure of the doll unrecognizable to anything that resembles JLo’s curvy body. Just as the original Barbie doll is overly exaggerated to be an unrealistic version of a woman, you have cut the curves from Jennifer like you were slicing corned beef in a deli; ultra thin and very unsatisfying to receive.

Jennifer has long embraced her curvalicious form to the great delight of millions of fans. She has built her wardrobe around her booty and her thighs to show she is proud of her womanly figure and not afraid to show it. But Mattel in their misogynistic-type judgement has decided Jennifer is not perfect enough to show in true form but needed a little sculpting.  Hence the doll that looks like Jenny From the Block’s super skinny counterpart.

Let’s compare the two, shall we? Here are the dolls, dressed in outfits Jennifer has worn in real life. On the whole the dolls are pretty but with the trademark look that Mattel has established as a “real” woman’s body; big boobs, small waist, skinny thighs.

JLO-Barbie

A side view showing her “JLo booty”:

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Here is Jennifer dressed in the outfits in real life:

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The doll is obviously not playing up her “ass”ets and is another disappointment to real women everywhere when the doll maker is once again promoting the idea that the “real woman” is going to be 36-18-33 in measurements. (Maybe in the 1800’s when women were wearing whalebone corsets and squeezing their innards into organ damaging shapes.) For once, I would like to see a doll that really shows the configuration of the person that they are trying to sell.

photos by: dailymail.uk.co; papusilemele.com

Pregnant Celebs-Kerry Washington Olivia Wilde Kristin Cavallari

‘Tis The Season For Celebrity Babies

We thought this past summer was the season for celebrity babies but Kerry Washington, Olivia Wilde, and Kristin Cavallari proved us wrong.

We thought this past summer was the season for celebrity babies but Kerry Washington, Olivia Wilde, and Kristin Cavallari proved us wrong. Scandal star is expecting her first child. This is yet another surprise announcement from People’s Best Dressed Woman winner. Earlier this year, she revealed a secret wedding with her now husband, 49ers cornerback, Nnamdi Asomugha. We’re definitely excited to see her pregnancy style on and off camera.

Kerry Washington

And we just got a glimpse of Olivia Wilde’s pregnancy style yesterday when she made her first public appearance since revealing her pregnancy. The actress looked beautiful in a Cushnie Et Ochs figure-hugging dress at the International Women’s Media Foundation’s Courage in Journalism Awards in Beverly Hills. The dress was classy yet still sexy and showed us that she’s just as or maybe even more glamorous with her baby bump. This will be her and her husband, Jason Sudeikis’, first child.

Olivia Wilde 2 Olivia Wilde

And former Hills star, Kristin Cavallari, is pregnant with baby number two. Cavallari and her husband, football player, Jay Cutler, celebrated their son’s first birthday over the summer and have expressed their desire for a big family. Cavallari told E! News that she “want[s] a little girl, but if I had another boy I would be so excited as well.” We loved Cavallari’s bohemian chic style when she was pregnant with Camden, so we can’t wait to see what look she goes for the second time around.

Kristin Cavallari

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Somali_Pirates

Music That Can Drive Even a Pirate Away…ARRRRRRR!!!

“Her songs were chosen by the security team because they thought the pirates would hate them most,” Merchant Navy Second Officer Rachel Owens told the Metro UK.

“Her songs were chosen by the security team because they thought the pirates would hate them most,” Merchant Navy Second Officer Rachel Owens told the Metro UK.

Whose songs? That would be Britney Spears. Songs like  “Oops! I Did It Again” and “…Baby One More Time” have been used by naval officers to ward off Somali pirates off the east coast of Africa.

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“These guys can’t stand western culture or music, making Britney’s hits perfect. As soon as the pirates get a blast of Britney, they move on as quickly as they can,” Owens continued.

Apparently attacks on cargo ships are at their lowest since 2006. Since the beginning of the year, only 17 ships have been attacked as compared to 99 in the same time period during the previous year.

Britney has become something of a hero if you really think about it. Actually her pop culture counterpart, Christina Aguilera, is doing her part to help her country also. Her song “Dirrty” is regularly used as a method of disorientation in military interrogations in Iraq and Afghanistan. Go figure…

Christina Aguilera NBC

 

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Pharrell and Helen

Pharrell Williams Marries Model Helen Lasichanh

It seems like this is the year of celebrity engagements and weddings…but I may or may not have shed a little tear over this one (seeing as I was pretty sure Pharrell would find his way to me).

It seems like this is the year of celebrity engagements and weddings…but I may or may not have shed a little tear over this one (seeing as I was pretty sure Pharrell would find his way to me). For all of you that had that super crush on him, Pharrell Williams is now officially off the market. After their more than 5-year-relationship (10 years Hollywood time) and 4-year-old son, Williams has married to fashion designer/model Helen Lasichanh. The two were suspected of having a secret ceremony in France a few months ago, but Williams and Lasichanh are only confirming their recent wedding this past Saturday. On the day of their ceremony, the pair were seen being photographed by Terry Richardson on a boat named “Never Say Never.” According to People, the couple exchanged their vows at the Kampong National Tropical Botanical Gardens. With Williams’ major music comeback and his new, beautiful and talented wife, we’re impatiently waiting for what he has coming next. Even though our hearts are breaking just a little, we congratulate the beautiful couple.

Pharrell and Helen L

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Michelle Lesniak Franklin WInner of Project Runway Season 11

We had an opportunity to chat with Michelle Lesniak Franklin, designer of AU clothing and winner of Project Runway Season 11.

We had an opportunity to chat with Michelle Lesniak Franklin, designer of AU clothing and winner of Project Runway Season 11. The Oregon designer has been very busy since her Project Runway winning collection hit the Lincoln Center runway in New York City and was putting the finishing touches on the collection that is showing on the FashionXT Runway in the shipyards of Portland, but she had time to answer a few questions for us.

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FNL:  It has been a few months since you have won Project Runway, How has your life changed?

MLF:The biggest change is my frequent flyer miles. I travel a ton. Including overseas which is super exciting. I always have a suitcase packed because a lot of times, the travel is last minute.

FNL: What projects/events do you have coming up?

MLF: FashionXT, rebranding, new website, working on production, the list goes on…

FNL: What do you think of the fashion scene in Portland compared to what is going on across the country?

MLF: Portland has a real DIY attitude towards fashion, if you can dream it you can do it…I think that is the biggest advantage Portland has over other cities.

FNL: One piece of clothing/Accessory that is a must have in your closet.

MLF: A great pair of jeans.

FNL: Favorite piece you have ever made whether for sentimental value or for aesthetics.

MLF: My first leather jacket. I made it for my 30th birthday.

FNL: Favorite designer

MLF: Bottega Veneta; a design house that started out in handbags, beautiful and feminine but with an edge.

FNL: What was the first thing you ever made? What age?

MLF: I altered vintage clothing in high school. First thing I ever designed was my prom dress???

FNL: Where do you see yourself in five years?

MLF: Hopefully in an ice cave in Finland with a bottle of Aquavit and some pickled fish.

FNL: Are you excited about FashionXT?

MLF: Of course. FashionXT feels not only like a family but also helped launch my career.

FNL: Who was the biggest influence in your life in relationship to your career choice?

MLF: Family; my Mom, a couple of Aunts, my Dad, and teachers. There isn’t just one person.

Image by Michelle Lesniak Franklin Facebook

For More on Michelle:

Project Runway Winner: Portland, Oregon’s Michelle Lesniak Franklin

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